INTRODUCTION

This page contains reviews that I received while working on, and after publishing my second book entitled, 'NO - Sequel to One Small Word'. Special thanks to Joanie and John Wood who, like for my previous book, were my mainstays during the writing of this book. They provided me with so much valuable feedback yet again. I shall be for ever grateful.

Please again read the reviews in date order from the bottom upwards.

US REVIEW OF BOOKS

No: Sequel to One Small Word

by Gloria Eveleigh

published by URLink Print and Media

book review by Mari Carlson

"The most important positive effect from all of her negative experiences was that each had made her into a stronger woman." This novel is a streamlined, to-the-point account of Frankie’s continued battles against abuse. Frankie does not attend the funeral of her father, who abused her until she told him “no” at fourteen. Shortly after his death, Frankie’s husband, Alex, has a stroke. He was the man of her dreams, and confronting the end of the Alex she knew conjures angry memories of her father’s betrayal. Frankie finds solace in Gavin, a colleague, while caring for post-stroke Alex. She and Gavin, along with other workmates, support one another as they lodge formal complaints against their bullying boss. A new job and flat relieve some of Frankie’s stress, but the bullying continues on the parish council she chairs. After Alex dies, Frankie wonders what the inevitable next challenge will be. As a survivor of abuse, Frankie knows she’s susceptible to victimhood. With many cliffhanger chapter endings, the plot sustains suspense about the bullies’ next moves and how Frankie defends herself against them. This focus on bullying keeps the writing centered on feelings and relationships. The small cast contains only Frankie, people who bully her, and people who support her efforts against bullies, creating a closed and threatening ambiance. The setting is so bound up with Frankie’s inner world that it’s not clear where she lives until London is mentioned. Descriptions about the setting increase as Frankie settles into more solitude in her new abode. She enjoys creative endeavors and her surroundings while working independently, making a real difference in her field of social work: specializing in seniors. Metaphors and lyrical prose increase in the last part of the book. The ending is positive and uplifting. The “no” that determines Frankie’s life trajectory turns into a “yes” to life-affirming practices and people.

FEEDBACK FROM JOANIE ON CHAPTERS 33-36

Good grief, what a moving chapter 33. Another lovely moving chapter 34, which will touch every readers heart, as it does mine. Love the additional info regarding the butterfly too.

This book has been a damn good read throughout. Reader cares about what happens to Frankie, grows fond of Alex and feels empathy for him and initial suspicions around Gavin are alleviated as the book goes on. He remains steadfast.

FEEDBACK FROM JOHN ON CHAPTERS 33-36

Your account of Alex’s death and the aftermath is faultless, containing everything that needed to be said. It will probably be one of the most difficult things you will ever write and the hardest to express. It needed to be factual, but not emotionless. It needed emotion to be expressed, but not slide into sentimentality. It had to contain a tremendous amount of information, whilst at the same time not drifting off at tangents...

It would have been easy to just give a brief account of the funeral service and celebration party, but in doing so an awful lot would have been lost. By fully describing it all you added a crucial extra dimension to the story and our understanding of many characters within it... it flows wonderfully. It is an honest account that every reader will readily identify with in some way... this rates as your best work yet in my opinion. Exceptionally well done!

FEEDBACK FROM JOANIE ON CHAPTERS 29-32

Well, lass, you are storming it. What a story you have! Bloody ell, the Parish Clerk, talk about subterfuge!!! The Monitoring Officer, what a bitch. I’m sure a lot of readers will identify with the circumstances in chapter 30, and it will bring back memories for many.

FEEDBACK FROM JOHN ON CHAPTERS 29-32

I feel this is some of your best work yet. It has a natural flow to it that takes the reader along at a fair old pace, which is appropriate given the subject matter. It will have been a roller coaster period for Frankie and this is captured wonderfully in your writing. So many different facets of her experience are incorporated and dialogue is good, natural feeling.

FEEDBACK FROM JOANIE ON CHAPTERS 25-28

This story really belts along, and each chapter ends with the reader wanting to read on. The secret of a good book! It really is a good book too, lass. What a gripping chapter 25. Loved the party episode in chapter 27.

FEEDBACK FROM JOANIE ON CHAPTERS 21-24

The tension really comes over in Chapter 21. Well done lass. Its winging along brilliantly.

FEEDBACK FROM JOHN ON CHAPTERS 21-24

There is little to say regarding the bulk of the story in these Chapters. It is largely an account of events relayed in a chronological manner, detailing how Frankie moves from A to B both literally and metaphorically. The sense of frustration and unfinished business regarding the upgrading, Caleb’s shenanigans and the house moving mine field are well described, which is important in order for the reader to understand properly the number of plates on sticks Frankie was trying to keep spinning!

FEEDBACK FROM JOANIE ON CHAPTERS 17-20

I zipped through wanting to know what was coming next and had to go back to read more carefully ha ha. You certainly know how to leave a cliff-hanger at end of chapters!! Seriously Glo it’s a damn good read and I loved it.

FEEDBACK FROM JOHN ON CHAPTERS 13-16

To sum up, these chapters take the story on a fair way and illustrate that nothing in life is straightforward for some people. For Frankie, who was well along the road to recovery after the events of the first book, Alex having his stroke changed everything in an instant. For any reader who has never been in a similar situation it is vitally important to explain the impact this can have on couples. Only when this is understood can the reader begin to make any sense of subsequent events. I think you have laid this groundwork well and the more information given, especially the emotional, the better readers will grasp why Frankie pursues certain paths

FEEDBACK FROM JOANIE ON CHAPTERS 9-16

It is certainly a good read lass. Well done.

FEEDBACK FROM JOHN ON CHAPTER 1

I must say it certainly grabs the readers attention from the off and doesn’t let up until the end. You managed to convey an awful lot of information, past and present, without it ever being confusing. This is a big plus for me, as not easy to achieve as you know only too well. I always think the best authors are somehow able to write in a way that enables the reader to ‘see’ events in their mind, without going into overlong description. I have to say you achieved this well in writing; I was there watching it unfold and feeling the emotions of those involved. I don’t think you have written better.

FEEDBACK FROM JOANIE ON CHAPTER 1

Wow, what a start. Thing is, I can picture them all now!! It moves along a pace and to be honest, I was hard pushed to find fault.